The following is excerpted from the “Trading Psychology: Building a Winning Mindset” presentation at MTI’s Investment Leaders Summit event held on April 27, 2021. The session featured Jared F. Martinez (The FX Chief™), author, forex mentor, educator, market analyst and entrepreneur, as well as the founder of Market Traders Institute, Inc. (MTI).
Today, I want to talk about creating a winning mindset as a Forex trader. I read the book “The Power of the Subconscious Mind” about 30 years ago. I’ve probably read it 12 times in my life. It’s a book I highly recommend that you read to help you understand how our minds work.
I’ve discovered that the subconscious mind is the greatest gift our creator has given us to [help us achieve] what we want in this life.
How Your Mind Works
>Think of your mind as a garden and yourself as the gardener.
>You are planting seeds of thought with your conscious mind, into the garden of the subconscious mind.
>The seeds are your habitual thinking. What you sow, you shall reap. You cannot plant an apple seed and get an orange tree.
>The conscious mind is like a captain on the bridge of a ship sending orders to the crew. The seamen are like the subconscious mind who control the boilers, engines, gauges, rudder, and so on. They do not know where they are going. They can only follow orders. They trust that the captain knows where he’s going, therefore his decrees become law and are carried out.
>What you think about, you decree and it will come to pass. Whatever you want, once you conceive it in your mind, you can nurture it into reality.
>Your thoughts, feelings, and visualized imagery are the organizing principles of your experience here on earth.
>Your subconscious mind will bring to pass any picture held in your conscious mind with a belief that it can become real. A mental picture is worth more than a thousand words. It can become your reality.
What you think about radiates out of our being and creates circumstances and events that align with what we think about. Therefore, we will never commit an action before a thought. You have to think first and then commit the action.
So what you think about, you decree. You tell your subconscious mind and with your conscious mind what you think about, you decree and it will come to pass. Now, think about that [connection]. Whatever you want, once you conceive it in your mind, you can nurture it into reality.
I would like to ask all of you in attendance to go get what I call a “subconscious mind board.” If you want to sell your home, then put a picture of a “sold” sign in front of your home or just any home on that board. If you want to buy a larger house or smaller house, then put a picture of that house on your board.
If you want to decorate your house a certain way, then go look through magazines and put how you want to decorate it on that board. If you want a new car, then put it on that board. If you want to be a better father, better mother or better grandparent, then put that goal on that board.
I have challenged people probably for the last 10 years to create subconscious mind boards. And I have gotten countless emails from students saying, “Geez, this is so amazing. I have been achieving everything on my board.” Your subconscious mind will bring to pass any picture held in your conscious mind with the belief that it will become real. Do you realize how powerful that is?
Put a picture of you holding up a $100 bill on your board and underneath it write ”master trader” because that’s what you’re trying to become. You’re trying to move from being a disaster trader to a master trader. A master trader is any trader that can consistently make a profit.
Irrational and Rational Parts of Your Mind
Your mind is divided into two sides: The rational conscious mind and the irrational subconscious mind. Now, why is it irrational? See, the subconscious mind doesn’t know whether winning in a trade is good for you or losing in a trade is bad for you. It doesn’t know that. It just knows to perform what you think about.
For five years, I literally fell out of bed and some days I would crawl to my computer thinking, “Oh boy, I’m going to get beat up by the market again today.” In fact , I kept saying that to myself over and over and over again. Do you know that I would [go on to] get beat up by the market all day long, week after week, month after month?
But then I read “The Power of the Subconscious Mind” and I found out how the conscious mind works with the subconscious mind. I started jumping out of bed and running to my computer and this is what I would say on my way, “I’m gonna win pips today.”
”If the subconscious mind is going to deliver what we habitually think about, then tell me the value of negative thinking when you go to trade? It serves no value.“
As a matter of fact, [there’s a negative effect] in saying to yourself, “I’m probably going to lose today. I just can’t place a new trade. I struggle so many times with finding the right trade.” See, all that negative self-talk like “I’ll probably lose today” makes the subconscious mind say, “Hey, baby, you want to lose?” because that’s what you’re talking about. We know how to lose. We’ve lost all kinds of trades.
So when you want to lose, your subconscious mind says, “This is what we gotta do. When you get emotional or your heart rate starts to increase and the market breaks out, then you gotta jump in that trade. Don’t worry about a strategy. Forget it.” Because the subconscious mind is there to repeat and produce what you think about.
Think about when you got your first bicycle. Do you know it takes 300 muscles, literally, that have to all be coordinated inside your body to balance on a bicycle? But as you were learning to ride that bike, you were telling yourself, “I can do this. I can do this. I can do this.” And you did it.
But what happens when you get on the bicycle the next time? You think, “I can do this. I can do this.” Do you know what your subconscious mind says then? “Don’t worry about it. We got this, man. I’ve mentally recorded everything that we did yesterday and I know what to do to ride the bicycle. So, why don’t you think about maybe a trick you want to do instead? Because if you want to do a trick, then you stay focused on that and I’ll stay focused on balancing you on the bicycle.”
Nowadays, everybody can get on a bike and you know what? You don’t even think about pedaling. You don’t even think about how fast you’re going. You’re busy riding that bicycle, maybe for exercise or for enjoyment. And the subconscious mind delivers the ability to ride that bike. Same goes with driving a car.
Do you remember the way we all learned how to drive a car? We had to literally think our way through it. It would take 15 minutes to pull out of the driveway because we would get in the car and put on our seatbelt, turn on the radio, and roll down the window. And then we thought, “Oh, I’ve gotta adjust that rear view mirror.” So we undo our seat belt and go adjust that mirror.
Driving was a whole ordeal. We had to think about how much pressure to put on the gas pedal and how much pressure to put on the brake. And literally, it would take us 15 minutes to back out of the driveway because we’d throw our arm over the seat to look behind the car, drive about 10 feet and then look around and think, “I’ll make sure I’m not hitting anything.” Then we’d drive another 10 feet.
Today, look at us. You drive with a drink in one hand, your phone in the other hand, and you’re steering with your elbows. And do you know what the subconscious mind says to you now? “Think about other stuff. I’ve got this. I’ll get you from point A to point B safely because that’s what you want. We’ve been doing this for years.” Now, think about that [mind-body] relationship.
“The subconscious mind does know the difference between a winning trade and a losing trade. And it knows the habits you have to implement to get that winning trade. [The subconscious mind] knows it automatically.”
And it knows what habits you have to implement to have a losing trade. So you hear me say this all the time, “Champion traders learn to win their trades first.” See, losers are subconsciously incompetent. But when you start doing the right things over and over and over again, then you will walk to your computer with the mindset of “I’m going to capture pips today. We’re going to win.”
So when you’re looking at trades and you’re thinking about that old habit of just jumping in when the market’s heating up, then you go grab your computer mouse and guess what happens? The subconscious mind says, “Put that damn mouse down because you said you wanted to win pips today. So, that’s not how we’re going to win pips. I already know how to lose pips and I know how to win pips. So we’re going to do what needs to be done to win pips.”
Do you understand this [concept]? Do you understand how critical this [concept] is? You think with your rational mind and the irrational subconscious mind brings to pass what you think about.
Your subconscious mind is the foundation of your emotions and it’s called the creative mind. It is your thoughts that bring about desirable and undesirable conditions. It’s our thoughts that do that. So if you think negatively, you’re going to get negative results. If you think positively, you’re going to get positive results.
Every thought is a cause and every action is an effort. That is why it’s critical that you take control of your thoughts. Now, once you begin to control your thought process, you can apply the power of your subconscious mind to any problem or any difficulty, [including becoming a master trader.]